Monday, May 18, 2015

Making the Curator's Cut

Ladies ask me all the time, "How do you know which bracelet to choose?" Let me tell you, in the beginning, it's really a crap shoot with an online vendor. When you log on and find that you literally have hundreds of items to select from, the colorful and inviting photos were enough to put me in a click-coma. Next 10. Next 10. Next 10. The average woman can easily lose herself in what I am going to call a Symphony of Serotonin that results in a lack of concern for time, cost and shipping charges! Initially, I would click and mentally "Ohhh" & "Ahhh" while my body assumed an increasingly more relaxed posture as a smile spread across my face because visions of happy customers danced in my head.

The first order I ever placed was complete crap. Items that I expected to look solid and substantial looked plastic and flimsy. Other pieces gave the forbidding promise of tarnishing as they didn't have either epoxy or rhodium coating. Should I keep them all and try to sell them or send them back and incur the cost return shipping charges and a restocking fee? Man! What was I thinking? I can't do this. Oh, but how I enjoyed the shopping experience - I couldn't give that up. And I already had such a clever name for my boutique; My Arm Charms! I told myself that I had to make a go of this thing.

I decided to study up and exam the pieces that I received while referring back to the images and descriptions. Understanding what I received per what I ordered afforded me insight into what specific descriptors really meant; what was I most likely to receive in the future if I ordered other pieces with the same descriptors? I examined the components of the pieces. That which looked to be of sturdy construction in the image - what did that translate to in real life? Overall, I have gotten much better at picking quality pieces from images and descriptions alone. Things I take into consideration:
  • Epoxy coating (Offers a thicker & harder coating that is more resistant to water which can hasten discoloring)
  • Rhodium coating (Offers a clear coating that prevents/slows tarnishing & color discoloration)
  • Metal casting (Offers substantial weight and sturdier construction)
  • Acrylic verses plastic (To prevent cracking)
  • Flexible, moving parts (For ease of fitting various wrists sizes)

There are still a few fashion bracelet pieces here and there that do not make the curator's cut, but they are far, few and between repeated winners. Eventually, I will probably donate a large box of fashion bracelets to a local Goodwill or Salvation Army. Just be rest assured that the inferior pieces won't make it to the boutique - that's my promise.